After the craziness of Asia, it was nice to finally be in an English speaking country where I could drink tap water and didn’t have to haggle when trying to buy something!
Whilst staying in my hostel in Cairns I met Dennis zum Dohme from Germany, who seemed to know quite a bit about the Reds. He supported Borussia Monchengladbach and was the only one out of three friends to know about the club; the others supported lower league German outfits FC Dynamo Dresden.
Dennis’ knowledge came from the Steve Evans days and the first League Two stint via the popular Football Manager game. He must have had his tactics spot on as he only took an impressive four seasons & nearly three successful back-to-back promotions to get to the Premier League and be crowned Champions.
He even went one further the season after, acquiring Ballon d’or winner Cristiano Ronaldo, Sergio Aguero & German favourite Bastian Schweinsteiger to the Checkatrade.com Stadium as Reds lifted Europe’s most sought after club trophy, the Champions League. (If Carlsberg did football management…)
One must-do in Cairns is to visit the world-famous Great Barrier Reef to see the fish that kit manufacturers back in the 90’s must have took their inspiration from, with the obscure patterns and exotic colours.
Whilst on the snorkelling trip I threw my Reds shirt on top of the wet-suit to see if anyone recognised the top. Football has been the starter to most conversations on my travels so far, and was the case again on board the vessel as two Englishmen immediately noticed and asked me if I was from Crawley.
Both were Leyton Orient supporters from East London and told me they’d be back home in time for the showdown between the two clubs at the Checkatrade.com Stadium- I bet they wished they had stayed after Saturday’s result!
The pair were also at last years fixture, where a solitary Izale McLeod goal earned Reds all three points. Maybe next year Orient, aye?